The Vegan Cobb Salad.

I have always been mesmerized by Cobb Salads. With those colorful rows of perfectly arranged, freshly chopped, salad ingredients. Bright red tomatoes, shiny black olives, fresh chopped onions, succulent avocados and more.

Of course, if you are familiar with "the Cobb" you know that it is anything but vegan. It usually contains such cubed ingredients as eggs, chicken, bacon and cheese. So instead of whimper at not being able to order the Cobb Salad on another menu - I decide to make my own. Meet The Vegan Cobb!

My Vegan Cobb. Luscious green avocados, sweet mandarin oranges, perky cherry tomatoes, sweet Vidalia onions, smoky tempeh bacon bits - and even a clever little way to fake hard-boiled eggs. Make it tonight!..

Egg - less. So you know those white and yellow hard-boiled egg cubes that always end up on the Cobb? Well I considered simply doing a tofu cube. But I though of an even snazzier option: Zesty Turmeric Hearts of Palm! Not only does this fake the egg thing quite well, it tasted delish!

Cobb Fun Fact - How the Cobb Came to Be:
"Cobb was the owner of the famous Brown Derby restaurant in Hollywood. Legend has it that Cobb was strolling through the restaurant kitchen late one night probably in 1936, hungry, and started pulling things off the shelves and out of the refrigerators — avocado, tomato, lettuce, cold chicken, hard-boiled egg, bacon, Roquefort cheese, etc. (the ingredients vary a bit, depending on which legend you follow) — and put together quite a nice salad. The ingredients were chopped into a fine dice, arranged in stripes on top of the lettuce, and dressed with French dressing."

Tempeh Bacon Bits on top..

The Vegan Cobb
makes one giant big bowl

6 cups of chopped fresh spinach - or another salad green for the base
1 cup mandarin oranges, drained
1/3 cup sliced black olives
1/2 cup chopped sweet onion - tossed in black pepper
1 avocado, chopped - tossed in the juice of 1 large lemon
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
3/4 cup tempeh bacon bits - recipe here
1 cup chilled kidney beans, drained
1 cup hearts of palm (diced) - tossed in 1/8 tsp turmeric + 1 tsp olive oil + 1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar + 1 Tbsp nutritional yeast

To Make:

1. Toss your spinach in a light salad dressing - only if serving immediately. If your Cobb will sit for a while, leave greens undressed.

2. For your hearts of palm - only toss half of them in the yellow turmeric mix. This way you will have half white and half yellow. Just like an egg would look. Continue assembling salad - add all your ingredients in thin rows across the top.

3. Serve! I like this salad with a generous drizzle of my Vegan Ranch Dressing. or you can use the traditional Cobb Salad dressing - which is zesty french. Yum!

Happy Cobb-ing!


Recipe Round-Up for a Meatless Monday: 7/25

Delicious dishes for today's Meatless Monday Vegan Recipe Round-Up! This week, you don't want to miss out on a vegan burrito, a Refreshing Grapefruit Fizz, Bluebird Cake, Twilight Salad and an easy Panzanella...

You can also peruse for more Meatless Monday inspiration! Here is this week's FK round-up!..

7/25 Weekly Vegan Recipe Round-Up - perfect inspiration for your Meatless Monday
(click link for complete recipe and photos)

* How-to Veganize a Standard Baking Mix. Recipe: Bluebird Cake.
My recipe for Blueberry Bluebird Cake - fluffy and moist. Plus how-to veganize a baking mix with easy substitutions!

* Vegan Burrito Night
Vegan burritos with some twists - lime quinoa and "cheezy" pinto beans.

* Lime Mint Grapefruit Fizz
This refreshing mint and lime infused fizzy sip will cool you off and chill you out.

* 20 Vegan Summer Smoothie Recipes - with photos! (slideshow)
A rainbow of smoothies! 20 of my fave recipes.

* Summer Peach Crisp
Leftover peaches from your peach pie? Makes a peach crisp. Easy and rustic.

* The Twilight Salad
Juicy black plums, red beets and deep purple figs. This salad is totally Edward Cullen approved! (well, if he ate salads..)

* Hummus Panzanella, aka Bread Salad
Try this easy panzanella - the perfect way to use up your day-old loaf of crusty bread!

You can follow my post timeline on Babble's Family Kitchen here: here.


Smoky Maple Tempeh Cheezy Broccoli Pita.

My Smoky Maple Tempeh Broccoli Pita is not your typical pita. It carries some serious weight. Muscle. Body. I call this the hungry-man or woman's pita. Super satisfying.

The Flavors: Florets of smoky broccoli - accented by tamari and spices - mingle perfectly with the crispy maple tempeh slices - which have a flavor of over sized tempeh "bacon" - salty and sweet. The tender tomato and slather of Vegenaise add just the right amount of moisture. Generous portions of these hearty ingredients are stuffed into a grilled slice of pita. Have an appetite? This is the pita for you!..

Flavor Tip!
Dust cooked broccoli in nutritional yeast and broil in oven for 2 minutes for an extra cheezy, savory taste and crispy texture!..

Who says a pita can't carry a little muscle? Usually you'll see a delicate ingredient paired with a hearty ingredient in a pita. Like spinach paired with chunky blocks of tofu. Or dense beans paired with fluffy rice and light crunchy veggies. Well, I adore eating broccoli and tempeh for lunch or dinner - so I decided to stuff it all into a pita. It was a hearty bite filled with flavor.

A meal in a pocket. Pita pocket that is.

There is just something nice about being able to eat your meal via pita, rather than via fork and plate. Side of lemon iced tea to swig.

Plus this pita is super healthy! Fiber, protein, vitamins - and anytime your can get lots of broccoli on your plate (or pita) that's a very good thing.

For the pita part I used Trader Joe's Soy Pita because it is super tender and chewy - just how pita should be. You could also use whole wheat - but just be sure to warm the pita properly to get it crispy on the edges and warm and tender on the inside. I used my panini press to grill/warm the pita. A dry, un-warmed pita pocket will not work for this recipe.

..hmm, isn't there a song this reminds me of? That pocket full of sunshine song? Well here's my version "Pocket Full of Yumminess" ... "I got, got a pocket full of tempeh. Broccoli and tomatoes. And I, I know that it's all mine. Oh. Oh. Oh. Oh."

.. :)

Smoky Maple Broccoli Tempeh Pita
makes two pita halves

5-6 blocks of long-thin cut, Crispy Tempeh Cubes (see link for recipe and how-to video)
1 1/2 cups cheezy broccoli (see below)
1 tomato, sliced
1-2 Tbsp Vegenaise OR warmed hummus
1 pita pocket, sliced in half and warmed or toasted

Cheezy Smoky Broccoli:
2 cups broccoli florets
1 Tbsp safflower or extra virgin olive oil
1 Tbsp water
2 tsp tamari or soy sauce (since this is salty - no additional salt is needed)
1 tsp liquid smoke (optional)
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1 Tbsp nutritional yeast (optional - see flavor tip above)
fresh black pepper - to taste
To Make: Saute over medium heat until tender.
Steam it: You can also steam the broccoli and toss in the added spices and liquids if you'd prefer. By steaming the broccoli, you can omit the added oil.

Add: Your favorite garlic hummus - splashed with EVOO and warmed up in the microwave. Or try this hummus recipe.

To Make Pita:

Warm or grill your pita. Slice in half.
Add the Vegenaise or warm hummus.
Add the tempeh, broccoli and tomato.
Allow the warm ingredients to soften the inside of the pita a bit. This can be helped by wrapping the pita in foil and placing in warm oven for a few minutes.

Serve warm.


Vegan Wasabi Slaw

When I first set out to make this creamy Vegan Wasabi Slaw - I wanted something extra spicy - with a wasabi kick to make you shake your fists in the air until the shock of heat passed. Kinda like when you get a mouthful of wasabi on your vegan sushi roll. Needless to say, I love wasabi.

But this construction of this slaw didn't turn out exactly how I had planned..

Once I started playing around with this recipe, I realized that wasabi is a tricky, temperamental ingredient. It likes to stay pure. Singular. Bright. Simply piling in spoonfuls of wasabi wouldn't really increase the heat - it just throws the flavors out of sync. So mellow and light is how the wasabi had to stay.

And since I wanted a "creamy dressing" for my slaw I knew the moody wasabi would put up a fight against my heavy ingredients like silken tofu. It was a battle at the Vitamix, but after several tweaks to this recipe, I came out very satisfied.

Instead of a bold, spicy slaw - this recipe is actually quite mellow. The awesome creaminess of the dressing slowly overpowers any sharp wasabi taste. And rather, the wasabi "kick" is slow, mellow and understated - but definitely still there.

So even though this recipe didn't turn out exactly as I had planned - I am still loving the result: a super crunchy, refreshing, vibrant slaw with a creamy wasabi kick.

I chose to use Brocco Slaw and Matchstick Carrots instead of cabbage because it has a heartier texture that really stands up the the heavy, silken tofu wasabi dressing. You could try using cabbage, but I'd only use half the wasabi dressing.

How to Serve? Aside form eating in a big bowl as is, this slaw would be delish piled in a wrap or on a veggie burger. This slaw would pair perfectly with a few tofu skewers or sizzling hot pepper tempeh sticks. That hot and cold combo would be killer.

Vegan Wasabi Slaw
makes 7 cups

Creamy Wasabi Dressing:
2+ Tbsp wasabi powder
2 Tbsp grape seed oil
16 ounces silken tofu
2-3 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 1/2 Tbsp maple syrup
2 Tbsp tamari
1/4 tsp pepper
2 tsp garlic powder
1 Tbsp dried parsley flaves (opt'l)
sea salt (opt'l to taste)

1 bad (12 ounces) Brocco Slaw
1-2 cups shredded carrots
1 green apple, shredded (opt'l)
1/2 cup hemp or sunflower seeds (opt'l)


1. Add all the dressing ingredients to your Vitamix or blender. Blend until smooth. Taste test the dressing - you can add more/less of certain ingredients if you'd like. Salt to taste if needed.

2. Add your slaw ingredients to a large mixing bowl.

3. Pour dressing over the slaw. Toss well.

4. Serve right away - this salad will get slightly soggy when left overnight. But even "soggy" it's delicious in wraps!

If you want more heat (like I did) - instead of adding spoonfuls upon spoonfuls of the wasabi powder into the dressing - try this: drizzle some simple wasabi paste and soy sauce right over the slaw before you eat it. Or you can make a side dish of wasabi/soy dipping sauce - just as you would for sushi. Or add in a 1/2 tsp of cayenne to the dressing blend.


Kathy's Summer Peach Pie. How-to Video!

My Vegan Summer Peach Pie is rustic and delicate. Sweet and spiced. Light yet rich. Tart and buttery. I add a few unique flavor accents to my pie - a hint of cayenne and a dash of cinnamon. Butter (vegan!), spices, peaches - dessert heaven. And that flaky homemade crust? Easier than you think. So grab a bag of fresh summer peaches, pull on an apron - and dust some flour on your nose. It's summer pie baking time!

V I D E O. And please check out my latest how-to video! I show you step-by-step how to make this pie crust and filling. This video was quite the adventure to create! But I hope it will help you in your pie making process - so enjoy!...

THE VIDEO (recipe below)...

More of Kathy's Cooking Videos.

Spicy Pie. My favorite twist on "peach pie" is to add in spice - almost like a cinnamon-y apple pie. The sweet, tender peaches are coated in a light, spicy warmth that makes them sing.

Fresh peaches float on the par-baked crust. Ready for the top layer and a good 50 minutes in the oven..

No need to remove the peach skin. Those skins add so much color, texture and nutrients!..

Kathy's Summer Peach Pie

1 vegan pie crust - recipe

3-4 peaches, roughly diced and sliced
1/3 cup soy milk
1 Tbsp corn starch or arrowroot powder
1/3 cup sugar or maple syrup
1/2 tsp cayenne
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/3 cup lemon juice
2 tsp real vanilla extract
1/4 cup melted butter - cubed

Pie Crust:
2 cups white flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 Tbsp sugar
1 cup vegan butter, cubed
1/3 cup soy milk
1/3 cup water
extra flour for dusting/pressing out


*see video for complete how-to*

1. Crust. Use my technique in video to mix up the pie crust. Press out 1/2 of the dough into pie dish. Bake at 350 for ten minutes.

2. Peaches. Fold the peaches into the filling ingredients.

3. Pull the crust from the oven and pour in peaches. Dot with your 1/4 cup cubed butter. Grab chilled dough (other half) and roll out. Slice into strips. Arrange on top.

4. Bake at 350 for 55 minutes. Cool. Serve warm.

Leftover peaches? Make an easy vegan peach crisp

summer in a pie..

Rustic Pie. Perfection need not apply.


Recipe Round-Up for a Meatless Monday

Delicious dishes for today's Meatless Monday Vegan Recipe Round-Up! Throughout the week, aside from posting here, I post vegan recipes as a contributor to's Family Kitchen. You can bookmark my post timeline here. But to make sure you don't miss out on any of those posts - I'm making these Monday round-up's a regular feature.

..Because you certainly don't want to miss worm-y chocolate "mud" parfaits, papaya smoothies, Lego tofu and cheezy mashed hemp potatoes!

Plus, these round-up's are perfect for Meatless Monday inspiration. Or you can always peruse for more MM inspiration! Here is this week's FK round-up!..

7/17 Weekly Vegan Recipe Round-Up
- perfect inspiration for your Meatless Monday
(click link for complete recipe and photos/slide show)

* Lime Maple Papaya Protein Smoothie
Frosty, silky vegan breakfast smoothie - flavors of lime and maple paired with tropical banana and papaya - with hemp protein added in!

* Double Roasted Pepper Hummus
A savory sweet blend of yellow and red roasted pepper. Creamy and totally dippable.

* Worm Hill! Vegan Chocolate "Mud" Pudding Parfait
Fun blend of spinach-colored coconut "grass" - and chocolate pudding and cake "rocks and mud" - potato crisp "worms" and a cute little sign too.

* 20 Ingredients for Raw (or mostly raw) Vegan Meals!
Jam-packed slide show featuring my favorite ingredients and pantry items for creating healthy (mostly raw) meals in a flash.

* Harry Potter Party: Hedwig Owl Cake
This sweet little Snowy White Owl from the Harry Potter books and movies looks too cute to eat! Almost..

* Eight Cool Ways to Enjoy Watermelon
Some of my favorite watermelon recipes for the summer season.

* Tofu Lego bites for Kids!
Loved these yummy tofu bites shaped like Lego's! Plated with pesto and hummus. Kids will love tofu with these stackable bites! Savory sweet.

* Easy Cheezy Garlicky Mashed Hemp Potatoes
A staple in my house - I blend up these "way-to-easy" potatoes at least a few nights a week as a dinner side dish.

* Fancy Food Show DC - 2011 Trends Slideshow
I visited the Fancy Food Show and picked up a few of the food trends you may be seeing on store shelves this year.

A few photos from these yummy dishes..

Archive Round-Ups:
7/11/11 Recipes


Pumpkin Cinnamon Bun Layer Cake. vegan.

A little taste of fall in July is fine by me when the I'm biting into a fluffy, cream-cheese frosted, spice-infused vegan "cinnamon bun" cake!

Sweet swirls of cinnamon, vegan butter and baked walnuts unravel in each pumpkin spice - fluffy cake bite. Vegan cream cheese frosting is the perfect cool light topping for this super moist cake. Each fork-ful tastes like a cinnamon bun - only softer, fluffier and a tad more decadent. Dessert approved. Get my recipe for vegan Pumpkin Spice Cinnamon Bun Cake with vegan Cream Cheese Frosting...

Fluffy Frosted..

Note: My cakes were still warm when I frosted - that's why the frosting has a slightly "melted" effect. For no melting - cool cakes completely. But delicious either way!

Pumpkin in July. I had a rare can of pumpkin - in the middle of summer. This pumpkin was not easy to come by - if you have ever tried to buy a can of pumpkin in July, you will know this. Whole Foods told me it was a "seasonal item" and several other stores the same. Finally, my husband found me some at .. Target. I'll take it!

I was making a few pumpkin-infused recipes for a side project - and this was one of them. It was an experiment really. I had heaps of leftover cream cheese frosting from another recipe (plus some leftover pumpkin) - and instead of making pumpkin cinnamon rolls, I decided to make a cinnamon roll inspired cake. Quite tasty. And fun.

Pumpkin Spice Cinnamon Bun Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting
vegan, makes one 9" layer cake

2 1/2 cups flour
2 Tbsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup cane sugar
1 cup canned pumpkin
1/2 cup soy milk
1/2 cup water
1 Tbsp vegetable oil
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
Fold in:
2 Tbsp Ener-G Egg Replacer + 3 Tbsp water to activate (optional)

Sweet Cinna-Nut Swirl
1 cup chopped walnuts
1 Tbsp cinnamon (or pumpkin pie spice)
1/2 cup vegan butter - melted
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/2 tsp cayenne

Fluffy Vegan Cream Cheese Frosting (my recipe posted here)
8 ounces tofu cream cheese
1/2 cup vegan butter – softened
1/2 cup vegan shortening – softened
1/2 cup vegan sour cream
5 1/2 cups powdered sugar, sifted
2 Tbsp soy milk or soy creamer
1 tsp real vanilla extract
3 Tbsp corn starch
2-3 Tbsp dark grade maple syrup
pinch of salt (or to taste)


1. Preheat oven to 350. Grease two 8" or 9" circle cake pans.
2. Combine the dry cake ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Toss well. Fold in the wet ingredients.
3. Mix up the cinnamon swirl in a separate bowl.
4. Fold the Ener-G egg replacer into the cake ingredients if using.
5. Pour batter into cake tins. Swirl equal amounts of the cinna-swirl mix into the batter.
6. Bake at 350 degrees for 35 minutes - or until edges start to lightly brown.
7. Cool cakes completely before frosting.
8. Prepare your vegan cream cheese frosting (can also be done a day ahead). Blend all ingredients with a hand or counter top mixer. Blend until smooth and creamy. Chill in fridge until frosting firms up a bit.
9. Frost your cake. Garnish with cinnamon. Serve!


Creamy Cool Vegan Ranch Dip - Frisée Ranch Salad!

I'm continuing on with my summer skinny dipping! Well, skinny-ish. But no hummus today - I'm sharing my recipe for Creamy Cool Ranch Dip. It also works great as a salad dressing. This vegan Ranch is made from silken tofu and blends up in a snap. Serve it in seconds.

Creamy Cool Ranch Salad. This stuff is perfect for drizzling over crunchy, crisp summer salads. Try a vegan Iceberg Wedge salad or over some crunchy romaine. Or recreate my frizzy Frisée Ranch Salad - recipe below. And bonus! - in this salad recipe there is an entire bag of baby spinach and a giant block of protein-rich tofu. Talk about healthy. Yet all you see and taste is creamy/crunchy, zesty salad bliss.

So grab some veggie sticks, my ranch-tastic party platter is about to be served!..

Cool Ranch Salad:

Creamy Ranch. There are many versions of vegan ranch dressing. This is one of my favorites because it blends up perfectly thick and creamy. And it really is "cool" - since the major ingredient is silken tofu - all you have to do is chill your tofu ahead of time and blend - your dip will be nice and cold (cool) to serve - so no extra fridge time before serving. Yes, I know tofu is usually kept in the fridge anyways, but some of the boxed versions are shelf stable.

Spices. You can get creative with your own spice blend. Or simply use a multi-purpose veggie spice. Or try my spice suggestions in the recipe.

Secret Tofu. Tofu gets all dolled up for this ranch dip. Nothing scary about a bowl-ful of creamy goodness. In fact, I challenge any party-goers to put this dip right next to a non-vegan ranch dip at a party and see which one goes fastest. Hmm, I think I need to go to a party soon just so I can do this. :)

..And after you've mastered the "Ranch" part - you can move onto my Frisée Salad recipe below. This thing was amazing. Perfect balance of creamy and crunchy, silky and zingy.

Creamy Vegan Ranch Dressing
makes about 2 cups

15 ounces silken tofu, drained/squeezed dry
1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
3/4 tsp celery seed
3/4 tsp coriander
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp fine black pepper
1/4 tsp cayenne
2 Tbsp maple syrup - grade b
3/4 tsp sea salt - salt to taste
2-3 Tbsp grape seed oil

Optional Add-In's:
* 1 tsp parsley flakes or handful of fresh parsley - this will give your ranch a slightly green hue though.
* 2 Tbsp plain soy yogurt - for a more tangy "yogurt" flavor
* dollop of vegan mayo for extra richness
* use a seasoned salt for more flavor depth. Try lemon or truffle sea salt.

To make: Make sure tofu is well chilled when you blend. Blend until creamy - salt and spice to taste and serve!

Frisée Ranch Salad
serves 2

Zesty Green Ranch Dressing:
1 cup Ranch Dressing (see above)
1/3 cup lemon juice
1 bag baby spinach

1/4 cup sunflower seeds
4 cups Frisée salad
2-3 cherry tomatoes, sliced
a few croutons

plus extra Ranch Dressing for topping

To Make:

1. In a blender, add the Zesty Green Ranch Dressing ingredients. Blend until the ranch thins out into a more watery dressing.

3. In a large mixing bowl add the Frisée salad, sunflower seeds and the blended green dressing. Toss well until the greens are well coated.

4. Plate Frisée salad. Add a generous drizzle of the original Ranch Dressing (white) over top. Add tomatoes, pepper and croutons. Serve!

You can see how saturated the crispy greens are with the light green dressing..

So creamy cool..